How To Water Your New Hedge
Choosing, purchasing and planting a new hedge are all activities that can be exciting and rewarding for any homeowner. But while the initial excitement of hedge planting may be strong, remember that this is only the beginning of the process - it is important to remember that proper watering is necessary for the health and survival of your new hedge.
Why Is Watering Your New Hedge So Important?
The robust, outdoor nature of hedges means that some people struggle to understand that their new hedge is a living product and, as such, needs water to survive. This is particularly important for new hedges that are in the early stages of growth - it will take a year or two for the roots of your new hedge to go down deep enough to find their own water and be self-sufficient, meaning that they are totally reliant on you for the first few years of their lives.
It is, therefore, vital that you take the time to water new hedging plants throughout the first two years at a minimum- in some cases, the required watering period can be longer, depending on your soil type, hedge variety and, of course, the weather.
How to Water a Newly Planted Hedge
Proper watering is much more complicated than simply going out occasionally and watering your plants with a watering can or with your thumb over the end of a hosepipe. The right technique and application are crucial to help ensure that water reaches the bottom of the roots of your hedge, allowing healthy growth.
Planting a new hedge can be a big investment, so make sure that it is watered properly to give it the best chance of flourishing. Some top tips for proper watering include:
Know Your Species
Different species of hedge may require differing amounts of water. Make sure that you pick a suitable species and make yourself aware of its needs before you start planting. For example, deciduous hedges and species such as yew, photinia red robin, privet and beech will require less water to thrive once they are fully grown (though weekly watering is still advised), while leylandii, cherry laurel, and common box hedges require more watering to really flourish. Knowing this will help you to keep your hedge in the best possible health.
Use Proper Technique
As we mentioned, it is not enough to simply give your hedge plants a quick water once in a while. Proper watering technique involves soaking the soil around the base of the hedge thoroughly, both before and after you have planted it. This will ensure that water reaches the bottom of the roots of your new hedge, allowing it to properly establish itself.
Once Established, Water Deep but Less Frequently
Once your hedge is established, it will be able to tolerate dry spells and you will only need to water it once or twice a week, depending on the weather conditions - you could also opt for an auto system or with a porous pipe to keep your hedges, trees and shrubs hydrated. However, remember that when you do water your hedge, ensure that you do it thoroughly in order to provide the best environment for growth.
Know Your Soil
Soil type will also impact the amount of water that your new plants need. Heavy clay soils, for example, will need less water than more sandy soils which can be prone to drying out quickly - you may need to add organic matter or mulch to keep your plant moist and healthy - this can also help to prevent weeds. Take some time to get to know the soil around your hedge and adjust your watering schedule accordingly. You may also need to adjust according to the growing season - late winter will bring lots more rain, so make sure that you adjust as needed.
Download Our Watering Guide
Download and read our guide on how to water your new hedge – this is a must-read for anyone considering planting a new hedge and should be referred to both before and after planting to help keep your new hedge in a healthy condition. The guide also offers useful advice on the best way to water your new hedge and some of the key things to think about to help your hedge thrive.